Oil production at the Banyu Urip field, part of the Cepu Block in East Java, has finally reached the level of 150,000 barrels per day (bpd) in February 2016 after a long delay. According to Indonesia's oil & gas regulator SKK Migas, production at the field stood at an average of 130,000 bpd in the first month of 2016. The Banyu Urip field, operated by ExxonMobil Cepu Ltd, is expected to reach its top production rate - around 165,000 bpd - in March or April. This would mean that the Banyu Urip field accounts for nearly 20 percent of Indonesia's total oil production.
Originally, the Banyu Urip field was expected to reach its peak production rate in August 2015. However, due to technical difficulties as well as riots at the site there occurred a long delay. This delay was a burden for authorities as the field - containing an estimated 450 million barrels of oil - is the largest existing oil field in Indonesia.
The Indonesian government aims to see an average oil production figure of 830,000 bpd in 2016, up from a target of 825,000 bpd in the preceding year. However, according to a report released by Indonesia's Finance Ministry, the nation's oil output only reached 779,000 bpd in 2015. The delay in oil production at the Banyu Urip field was one of the key factors why the government's oil lifting target was not achieved last year. Due to declining investment in Indonesia's oil sector, output has been on the decline over the past two decades. It has become a usual phenomenon that the government's oil lifting target (set in the annual State Budget) is not achieved.
But there is good news. According to the latest data from SKK Migas, Indonesia's oil production stood at an average of 826,930 bpd in February 2016, not far from the target at 830,000 bpd set in the 2016 State Budget. This gives rise to optimism that Indonesia will achieve its oil lifting target.
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